Tuesday, January 4, 2011


A few months back I crept out, a shy blossom, to timidly and blushingly post my first ME!ME!ME! entry (September 11, 2010). This is a special entry that all bloggers must do at least once, in which they gas on about themselves endlessly...and ONLY about themselves. Somehow or other, God knows how, this turned out to be huge fun for me. Almost as if I was a big flaming ham and not a wee modest posy at all, although that is impossible, of course. In fact I got used to that ME!ME!ME! stuff real fast. So here is the second installment, again in a Question and Answer format.

Q.: So, have you learned to love cilantro? You were sort of struggling there for awhile...

A.: I just hate that nasty ditch weed. You might as well take a stinking moldy corpse-white plant growing above a grave, and roll it around in your soup. The flavor is not just bad, it's EVIL.

A.: What do you feel about cosmetics? A lot of women are going totally bare-faced these days...

Q.: I adore lipstick, and wear it all the time. The colors are so pretty. And a little eye-pencil can be fun. I live in the type of Green and rabidly PC city where a lot of the women feel really smug at going bare-face. They're like, 'Look at me, I don't give a crap, and that's great!' I always want to say to them, 'Where's the virtue in looking like a bleached steer's skull all day? For God's sake prop up the ancient bones with a dot of blush!'

Q.: So you think we're too casual, careless?

A.: I think we're thinking like Popeye: 'I yam what I yam.' But why? At home we put on clothes so dumpy we'd hesitate to donate them to a Salvation Army bin, and we wear them in front of the people we love best in the world. We should do better. My ideal is the French writer Colette. Even when she was 80 years old, she wouldn't let her husband see her in the morning until her hennaed curls were all fluffed up, and she had her eyes lined with kohl and a silk ascot on and the perfume he liked the best. We should take more trouble for each other. We'd be happier.

Q.: I remember you said you talk to yourself. Are you still babbling away?

A.: Yup. More than ever, since the election. Overnight, our nice Blue state became as Red as a maniac's eye.

Q.: I'm sorry I have to ask this, but are you making any headway regarding the Forgiveness thingy? As in forgiving your enemies?

A.: Not really. (Sigh.) I'm afraid the truth is that I don't want to forgive assholes. I want them to suffer.

Q.: Jesus is going to be so mad at you!

A.: You think Jesus likes assholes? He is way too smart for that.

Q.: I've heard you love Japanese movies. Why?

A.: They speak in a clear voice to our minds as well as our hearts. But be warned, a Kyoto ending can rip you up. I just saw a movie whose cheesy American title is THE SAMURAI I LOVED (Japanese title, Autumn Rain of the Cicadas.) The hero and heroine are childhood sweethearts who love each other their whole lives. Because of family tragedies they can never marry. They make heartbreaking sacrifices for each other. They can never embrace until the end...briefly...when they have to part forever. One kiss. Then he's in a canoe and she's in a palanquin, going in opposite directions. He's in agony because he knows he'll never see her again, but he holds himself together--because he doesn't want to hurt her with his pain. Then his canoe floats around a bend in the river. In the next shot of the canoe, we can't see him. Now, did he fall to the bottom of the canoe as though he'd been shot in the heart? Or in his anguish did he jump in the water and commit suicide? What a noble puzzle! And that's the end. Isn't it beautiful?

Q.: Well, it's, umm...I mean, it, ummm...well, it's definitely no barrel of monkeys. One freaking kiss, you said? For their whole lives? I have to ask: What did they get out of their love?

A.: Knowledge that the other person was alive in the world. That someone existed who loved them completely. And a profound, nourishing respect for the other person's---I guess I'd have to say, honor.

Q.: Well, that ain't no Hollywood ending, all right. Let's get back to food. What is one of your happiest mealtime memories?

A.: Wintertimes when I was a child. You have to understand that our state is a real mean sumbitch polar bear in the winter, you don't live here unless you MEAN it. I'd run into the house after school, late on a blue-black icy Friday afternoon, and that polar bear would be roaring after me. Then I'd be in the kitchen, and it would be warm, with a golden light, and would have this ragingly delicious smell of well-browned pork roast. On top of the refrigerator would be sweet rolls and coffee cake rising. My sisters and brothers and I had the whole fine weekend opening up broad and shining before us as we sat down to the table. And our mother and father would be there. So I know about heaven, or as close to it as makes no difference.

Q.: And there was no cilantro?

A.: No cilantro, at all.